Friday, April 5, 2013
Essex Happenings ….April 5, 2013
Essex Heritage Events and Activities
Essex Heritage Trails and Sails 2013
Essex Heritage’s Trails and Sails that is offered on the last two weekends in October each year has become a wonderful opportunity for the three quarters of a million residents of this area to view many resources of this region. The event has become synonymous with Essex Heritage and is fast becoming the signature event of the organization. There are over 100 facilities in the region that sign up for this five-day event and over one hundred and fifty presentations are offered. Sign-ups are going on right now for the Fall 2013 event. If you want to participate at a venue during the festival visit the Essex Heritage web site for more information. Visit www.essexheritage.org
National Park Service News from Salem
During this past week the National Park Service Salem Maritime National Historic Site offered some news of consequence. The word from the Salem site is that in the near term the rigging shed that was built as a staging location for much of the construction and provided protection from the winter weather is scheduled to be taken down. The building that is reasonably large measures 80 feet by 16 feet will likely be removed from the site early this year. When the sailing ship Friendship was being built, the shed was a wonderful location where visiting elected officials and Washington visitors could be welcomed and shown some of the work being accomplished before being installed on the replica ship. I can personally remember when the Salem Partnership used the facility to highlight our efforts on the ship to then Massachusetts Senator and present United States Secretary of State, John Kerry. Senator Kerry was in Salem to offer remarks to the Salem Partnership annual dinner. We used the occasion of his visit to walk the Senator through the work being accomplished at the shed and had a great deal of difficulty in getting him away from the maritime work and on to the Partnership pre dinner reception. He is an avid sailor and was most interested in the work. We ultimately got him to the Peabody Essex Museum and the reception to interact with our members.
The shed was never intended to be a permanent addition at the site and as such was not constructed up to today’s building standards, and the Service wants to spend its scarce resources on permanent historic structures at the site. There may be some resistance by the public to the plan, but the expected action has been the plan from the beginning.
The second piece of news from the Park Service was that a few weekends ago the facility kicked off a yearlong celebration of the seventy-fifth anniversary of the Salem Maritime Historic Site. The site was designated on St. Patrick’s Day 1938 as the initial National Park Service Historic Site in the United States by President Franklin D. Roosevelt to help celebrate the nation’s history. I would suspect that as 2013 progresses more celebratory events will be scheduled at the Derby Street Maritime site.
Essex Heritage Corporate Memberships
Since my illness, I have reoriented my duties at Essex Heritage. In addition to my position as a Trustee, a member of the Essex Heritage Executive and Nominating Committee and the editor of this once a week BLOG, Essex Happenings, I have undertaken the role of a solicitor of members for the Essex Heritage Corporate Membership Program. In the last year and one half since I have taken over this task, fifteen companies and organizations have responded to my appeal to join our endeavor. Those organizations listed below are not the only members of the Corporate Membership Group and if you wish to view a complete list of members visit the Essex Heritage web site at www.essexheritsge.org
I wish to thank all of the members of the Essex Heritage Corporate Membership Program for their generosity and particularly for their faith exhibited in the Essex Heritage Organization. For your information, I have provided a list that follows that indicates the participants that have answered my appeal. We have a number of proposals pending around the region and anxiously await more positive decisions. We are also open to any groups in the region that would like to joint this effort to continue programs that preserve, protect and promote the historic, cultural and natural resources of this incredible region.
• Andover Country Club
• Berry Homes, Topsfield
• Commonwealth Equities, Topsfield
• Northeast Community Bank, Danvers
• East Boston Savings Bank, Danvers
• Metro Credit Union
• Salem Witch Museum
• Henry’s /Wenham Tea House
• North Shore Elder Services
• Peabody Essex Museum
• Cummings Center, Beverly
• North Shore Music Theatre
• Salem Rotary Club
• Serafini, Correnti & Darling . Salem
• MacLean, Holloway Doherty Ardiff & Morse, PC Peabody
Just a final signage update for dear friends that helped create the Danvers Swamp Walk. The two signs that are mounted on posts placed at the two Swamp Walk entrances on the Rail Trail act as directional material for this site.
The 2 heroes who helped accomplish this task are Bob Brown & Laura Cilley who just recently joined the staff of Essex Heritage. They are a wonderful example of the Army of One (or two) that can make dreams reality. If you get a chance to see the new signs check them out. It is another step in the program to insure that this new natural resource is completed as the more pleasant weather arrives. Thank you both
Essex Heritage, with our mission to preserve, protect and promote the historic, cultural and natural resources of this region, applauds the work of all of the volunteers who together have created this spectacular natural resource in the Community of Danvers. As soon as spring 2013 arrives, whenever that happens, I urge you to get out and visit the Swamp Walk. You will be pleasantly pleased with what you can view and you will certainly enjoy your visit.
Danvers Historical Society
This month the meeting of the Danvers Historical Society was held at the Danvers Archival Center in the Danvers Library. The Archival Center was first founded in 1972 through a unique arrangement between the Town of Danvers and the Danvers Historical Society. It was first housed in the Tapley Hall facility owned by the Historical Society. The Archival Center is now located in the Danvers Library where it is managed and new collections are added regularly by the Town Archivist - Richard Trask. The following information was copied from their web site and is presented for your information. A detailed description of the work and the holdings of the Archival Center was provided at the meeting by Danvers Historical Society Trustee and Town Archivist Richard Trask which was most informative. The following information was copied from to the Danvers Archival Center Website:
The Archival Center houses a wonderful and diverse collection of two–dimensional materials that relate to the history of Salem Village and Danvers from the 17th century to the present. Our books, manuscripts, maps, photographs, newspapers and other materials are available to anyone interested in finding out more about Salem Village witchcraft, any aspect or era of Danvers history, local architecture, and local genealogy. Interested persons are urged to call and visit us during our open hours.
At the regular Society Meeting Operations Manager presented the following details about upcoming events for your information.
· Thurs. April 18, 2013 Americas First Ladies 7 PM Tapley Hall
· Sun. April 28, 2013 The Essex Harmony Spring Concert 3 PM Tapley
· Sun. April 28, 2013 Tea & History series, Page House Danvers Alarm List Members and DHS Members Mr. & Mrs. Bill Clemens will portray Jeremiah Page or Cpt. Putnam and spouse. Two seatings 1 PM & 3 PM. $20 p/p $25 p/p not-yet members. Sheila Cooke-Kayser and member Lisa Steigerwalt.
· Sun. April 28, 2013 SSU Students Exhibit in Tapley, Wayne E. & Gretchen Sinnett.
· ***New Event: Fri. May 3, 2013 Oniontown Variety Show, Tapley Hall 7-9 PM, Dan Tremblay host. We are looking for talent!!!
· Thurs. May 16, 2013 Salute! To our Vietnam Veterans 7 PM Tapley Hall
· Thurs. June 16, 2013 Annual Meeting and 50th Anniversary of our purchasing GMF gala.
· Mon. June 24 History, Harmony, Hot Dogs and Hits. Rain Date Mon. July 1, 2013
· Sept. 2013 program TBD
· Mon. Sept. 16, 2013 Golf Tournament Black Swan C.C. $125 includes golf, cart, lunch and lots of fun!! or sponsor a hole for $125.
· Oct. 2012 program TBD
· Thurs. Nov. 14, 2013 program: Richard Trask “JFK Assassination, A Personal Perspective” 7 PM Tapley Memorial Hall
· Sat. Nov. 30-Sat. Dec. 7 Parade of Trees Tapley Memorial Hall
· Designers Holiday Showhouse GMF Dates TBD
· Fri. Dec. 6, 2013 Christmas Soiree
· Sun. Dec. 15, 2013 Members Christmas Party at Tapley and The Essex Harmony Concert
· High Tea at GMF to benefit Derby Summerhouse Date TBD-Spring 2014
See all programs and events on our website: www.danvershistory.org – events!
A report regarding the Society’s gift Shop was also provided: We may be covered in a blanket of snow outside, but Spring has sprung at the Jeremiah Page House! Hop on over and peruse our new additions in the shop. You'll find colorful items to set your tea table and goodies to add to the Easter festivities. The Historical Society's Jeremiah Page House Shoppe is open Monday - Friday, 9am to 1pm. We look forward to seeing you!
News from Danvers Council on Aging
The Danvers Council on Aging, with the help of a grant from the Danvers Cultural Council, will be offering a Dinner Theater presentation on April 25, 2013 titled Meet Julia Child. The dinner service will be French in nature and will be offered by Henry’s Catering of Beverly and Wenham.
There will also be a seniors’ picnic offered on 6/18 that usually is offered as a free component to the Danvers Family Festival. Due to the fact that the Senior Center location will be in use at that time as an election location, the event will be held one week earlier than during Family Festival week.
Happy Patriots Day
This is a holiday with a great deal of meaning to this State and this region. The holiday celebrates much of what we in this region participated in during the battle for our independence during our war with England in the 1770’s. There is also a big sports connotation to the day as the world famous 26.2 mile Boston Marathon is held in eastern Massachusetts. There is also a-once-in-season morning baseball game for the Red Sox and with some planning those that attend the baseball game can take in a substantial portion on the race finish and cheer on the thousands of runners, many of whom are amateurs from this region competing for the honor of just finishing the race. Under the current method of obtaining a number to allow one to participate, substantial funds are raised for many most beneficial local charities.
Choosing a North Shore Vocational Technical Leader
The comprehensive new regional technical high school is fast rising behind the Essex Agricultural School on Route 62 in Danvers is approaching a major decision. The new school that was a long time in coming to fruition is fast rising from its foundation and this initiative will be a most valuable regional coalition for 1,440 prospective student body members. The regional school board, that represents the sixteen communities that manages the regional school, has reduced their superintendent candidates to two individuals who will have the incredible task of merging the Agricultural School with students from over fifty communities across the State with the Regional Vocational Technical School. The candidates, at this time, include the long time, well-known and highly regarded North Shore Vocational School Superintendent Daniel O’Connell and the current Minuteman Regional School Superintendent Edward Bouquilon Ph.D. Both men are in the running to lead the merger, to manage and operate the new school. A sub-committee of the full board is expected to make a recommendation by July 1, 2013 or sooner. This is a most important decision and will impact the initial phases of the merged operation and will certainly impact the long-term direction of long awaited regional coalition
Plum island Owners to Repair beach
The owners of the heavily damaged Plum Island Beach recently organized a number of local volunteers. With their own hands and energy, they began to clean up and make repairs to the heavily damaged beach adjacent to their property. Some of the repairs may or may not be allowed to stand once the current crisis has passed. The storms this winter have taken a heavy toll on this section of the Essex County coastline - causing a great deal of damage and the destruction of a number of seaside homes.
Election races in Topsfield and Wenham
Both of these two local communities have local municipal government and school district officers available in 2013 and these races in the local communities will be settled in local elections.
City of Salem seeks Artists for Artists Row
The City of Salem has announced that it is seeking artists and craft people to participate in that communities 10th Anniversary Artist’s Row Program at the Salem Marketplace. The location offers a place to work, exhibit, rent free in exchange for agreeing to offer free workshops and performances. The Artist’s Row Program in Salem will run from May 23 through November 3, 2013.
Regional Transportation Forum
The North Shore Alliance for Economic Development recently hosted a forum on regional transportation at Salem State University. The current leader of the Alliance is University President Patricia Meservey. Attending the forum were:
· Deputy to the Secretary and CEO of MassDOT Richard Davey
• State Senator Thomas M. McGee, Chair of the Transportation Committee
• Andrew Bagley, Director of Research & Public Affairs, Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation
• Ben Forman, Research Director, MassInc
• Keith Mahoney, Director of Public Affairs, The Boston Foundation
The public forum and panel discussion was titled "The Way Forward: A 21st-Century Transportation Plan". It focused on the Patrick Administration's recently released proposal for funding transportation infrastructure investments.
Medical, Senior and Disability matters
TD GARDEN and People with disabilities
On Monday evening the 25th, we visited the TD Garden in Boston and witnessed a Bruins overtime shootout win over Toronto who they lost to the weekend before. The management of the TD Garden did not disappoint as their treatment of people with handicaps was exceptional. The location of their handicapped seating is excellent and may have sightlines as good as any location in the building. The personnel were polite and very accommodating, and the evening was most pleasant. We have now experienced both TD Garden and Gillette Stadium and would provide high marks on handicapped attention at both locations. We have not made an attempt to visit Fenway Park as the handicapped parking and the seating arrangements do not seem to be very welcoming to handicapped guests.
Program for Young Adults with Intellectual Disabilities
There are all kinds of disabilities and young adults with intellectual disabilities can be especially troubling. In an attempt to have an impact on these matters, a young mother in Danvers realized that there were few places for her daughter, who had cognitive disabilities, anywhere on the North Shore so she took matters into her own hands and established a facility in Danvers for her offspring and others. She worried that her daughter would lose the skills she had developed if she went to a large facility away from home. She decided to establish LITE House short for Learning Independence Through Experiences, in familiar surroundings in a new facility that the Danvers. The parents have purchased and remodeled this facility where their daughter could continue to be surrounded by family and pursue her activities. The new Oak Street setting can hold up to five young adults with similar difficulties. Right now, there is only one other resident. The residents pay for the services they receive and the expectation is that the facility will be self- sustaining from support payments received by the residents from various sources. We certainly hope that this experiment is successful and that young adults exposed to this experience will be able to cope successfully with their disability and will become to be contributing adults in their future,
People in the News
Long-time local Rotary members have been named Community Heros by the American Red Cross. Ken Rothwell of the Salem Rotary, a local food entrepreneur and benefactor of many local organizations like the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Salem, and Beverly Rotarian and long- time supporter of numerous local organizations, Don Kelly were both named winners of the coveted American Red Cross Awards. The two award winners are both good friends of mine and it is most evident that they are both well deserving. They exemplify the ongoing motto of the National Rotary Association - “Service Above Self”.
St. John’s Prep Basketball Coach Steps Down
After a five year run where Coach Sean Connolly took the Prep on a most successful scholastic trip with a number of wins and tournament appearances, he has resigned to continue his studies as a teacher towards an advanced degree. The former Bishop Fenwick player, coach and collegiate player at Providence and Ohio State has not ruled out a return to coaching in the future.
Coney Island Re-Opens in New York
The wonderful resiliency of the American people was exhibited once again with the world famous New York waterfront amusement park Coney Island. Virtually destroyed by “Super Sandy Storm” (a late summer 2012 storm), the famous amusement park opened again just before Easter 2013. The work of many people was responsible for this re-birth of the iconic park. Congratulations to those responsible for this achievement.
Patriots Free Agency
As a new lower financial salary cap for the National Football League which was established for 2013, the New England Patriots and the other league participants are making some moves. Time will tell, but the Patriots might have suffered a big loss, when they failed to sign fan favorite Wes Welker and lost him to Payton Manning and the Bronco’s. They picked up a slot receiver who may or may not replace Welker. They also have a still to be proven wide receiver from Buffalo, and a much needed kick returner. They filled a need by signing a highly thought of older veteran to hold down one of the safety spots. They signed a couple of their own veterans, defensive backs Talib and Arrington and an offensive tackle Sebastian Vollmer. They lost a back-up offensive lineman. They failed to sign anyone to bolster their pass rush and I suspect that they may remedy that situation before the 2013 season begins. In general, I would give them at best right now a C plus for their efforts, but as with Wes Welker, only time and the next season will produce a final grade for their off season work.